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LSS renames food pantry to honor Jan Jirousek and Del Webb community's remarkable support of the feeding program

Updated: Dec 29, 2023

Janet “Jan” Morton Jirousek, third from right, pictured LSS staff and friends in front of the wall dedicated to her and the Del Webb community's amazing support of the food pantry at LSS.

On Thursday, December 28th, Lutheran Social Services of Northeast Florida (LSS) unveiled a dedication wall honoring Janet “Jan” Morton Jirousek and the incredible Del Webb community for their unwavering support of the LSS Food Pantry. The unveiling took place at the LSS Food Pantry, 4615 Philips Highway, and marked a milestone in recognizing the efforts and selfless contributions of these individuals.

So far, the Del Webb community has donated over 114,000 pounds of food through more than 300 car trips, alongside $60,000 in cash donations to LSS. Thanks to these generous contributions, nearly 19,000 families have been nourished during difficult times.

Jan embarked on this journey with a deep-rooted commitment to serving her community, a trait instilled by her father, Richard Wayne Morton. Her passion for giving back found a new purpose when COVID-19 struck in March 2020. Jan and her husband, Dale Jirousek, organized a food drive in her Del Webb Ponte Vedra neighborhood and selected LSS as the beneficiary.

What began as a singular effort soon transformed into a collective movement. Jan rallied her neighbors, inspiring them to contribute in various ways, from donating funds to sourcing fresh produce directly from local farmers.

Her expertise as a retired nurse practitioner became invaluable as she trained volunteers to handle and package essential items like rice and beans, ensuring safe distribution to families in need.

The ripple effect of Jan's actions expanded beyond Del Webb Ponte Vedra, encompassing neighboring communities like Del Webb Nocatee.

In Jan’s own words, "Acts of kindness can snowball. We just started with one load of food, and it's blossomed." Her dedication to serving others created a chain reaction of goodwill, proving that a single act can spark a community-wide movement of compassion and support.

In 2020, News4Jax recognized Jan and Dale with the Positively Jax service award.

The unveiling ceremony was a testament to the immense gratitude felt towards Jan, Dale, and the Nocatee community. It was a moment to toast their unwavering dedication, acknowledging their pivotal role in making a difference in the lives of many individuals and families.

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